World Wide Wed: Finding Yourself Around the World

I met a lot of people in Europe. I even encountered myself. – James Baldwin

This was the quote that inspired our facebook fans to reminisce on some of their fondest traveling memories. Last week we asked where it was that you felt you found yourself in some way or another. And believe me, we got a lot more than pin points on a map! Here is what some of you had to share:

Tona: New Orleans, moved there when I was young. When I finally made it back a few years ago… I felt what I had missed for so long… myself and home.

Elizabeth: In Mexico when everything was stolen. And although I was only left with myself, it was probably the most difficult way to have to encounter myself…

Dave: San Antonio Taco Company, Nashville, Tennessee. In the hot wings, accompanied by an iced bucket of Coronas, on the patio, on a warm spring evening…

Jennifer: Definitely in Italia… I think it was on the way to Pompeii while playing La Testa della Radio Scherzi on cute Italian boys… or actually when we spent the night at a convent in Munich. Pretty much my whole junior year abroad was an exploration of the world and self intertwined.

Bianca: On a Greyhound heading east into Columbus, Ohio!

Ellen: On a night train from Paris to Frankfurt, I couldn’t sleep because I knew I’d miss the landscape, the faces. I sat up searching the darkness, straining for every remote town’s light, memorizing the towns’ name signs at each depot. I knew I’d never be back. Somehow it assuaged that sadness.

Jordan: Barcelona =D Embraced the street culture – saw some gypsies fire dancing and joined in (got the burn scars to prove it). Dancing in the streets to public performers, meeting other travelers at the dodgiest, cheapest bars and young Catalans at festivals… I was really able to understand how disasters can become the greatest and most rewarding adventures. I left Barcelona having been robbed, mugged, homeless, lost and cram-packed full of intoxicated memories.

Mark: In Amsterdam… No it’s not what you’re thinking… I was riding my skateboard through an enormous tunnel leading to a park (near the Van Gough museum). As I entered I heard the most beautiful music, and as I rode, it became increasingly magical. The acoustics in this tunnel were amazing, I felt as if I entered a dream. I tried to ride through again and again, but I could not recapture the original feeling… Don’t you hate when that happens?

Seriously, you guys could write a book. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences and taking us around the world with your words. Whether it’s childhood memories, a good meal in good weather, breathtaking scenery, or an unforgettable struggle, these are what define us in many ways. As organic and personal as these memories are, they are also what keep us connected. Traveling the world is a series of completely unique experiences and yet it also provides the strongest bonds between people.

This is what Tripping is all about and its members make it happen! Continue exploring and encountering and please continue to share it with us!

-Lauren

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